Stressful life events affect hormone levels in children undergoing puberty

Joyce Chen ’23 Puberty is a physiological developmental process that every child undergoes during their preteen years. It occurs through the production of a wide variety of hormones within the body. Specifically, the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis and the hormone dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) are involved in initiating an upregulation of hormonal changes, leading to the secretion of the sex hormones testosterone and estrogen. Recent research indicates that … Continue reading Stressful life events affect hormone levels in children undergoing puberty

Lightning Strikes May Have Been a Key Ingredient in the Creation of Life on Earth

Sooraj Shah ’24 It has been long believed that the requirements for life on Earth were set into motion solely by a plethora of meteorites, which contained vital minerals for the foundation of living organisms. While this is true, recent evidence suggests that lightning may have played just as large of a role. A study conducted by Benjamin Hess, a PhD student at Yale University, … Continue reading Lightning Strikes May Have Been a Key Ingredient in the Creation of Life on Earth

Ageism during the Covid-19 Pandemic

Yukta Kulkarni ’22 The Covid-19 pandemic has affected the day-to-day lives of countless people. Experts predict that society will revert to how it was pre-pandemic with the development of the Covid-19 vaccine. However, since a limited number of vaccines have been produced and shipped to vaccination centers, demand currently outweighs the supply. Nevertheless, ageism is prevalent in the United States and has intensified within the … Continue reading Ageism during the Covid-19 Pandemic

Madagascar: Ecosystems and Biodiversity

Sabah Bari ’24 Biodiversity in an ecosystem is important because it maintains the structure and functioning of various organisms in the environment. Such as the supply of oxygen, water, the dependency of survival on plants and animals etc. One way to maintain biodiversity in ecosystems is reforestation. Stony Brook University researcher Patricia Wright had an ambitious plan of reforestation in Madagascar, Africa. Wright, a group … Continue reading Madagascar: Ecosystems and Biodiversity

The Gratitude Visit: Student Reflections on a Positive Psychology Experiential Learning Exercise

Thumyat Noe ’23 Positive psychology is the study of human strengths and virtues, which includes psychological factors that enhance quality of life and various social experiences. Positive psychology has become a popular topic of research due to possible associations with enhancing mental health. In particular, positive psychology interventions that promote gratefulness appear to be successful in fostering good mental health. Gratefulness is a well-studied construct … Continue reading The Gratitude Visit: Student Reflections on a Positive Psychology Experiential Learning Exercise

Playing Analog Game is Associated with Reduced Declines in Cognitive Function: A 68-year Longitudinal Cohort Study

Thumyat Noe ’23 Living an intellectual life is believed to slow down cognitive decline that occurs as a result of aging. Maintenance of cognitive function is widely studied in search for an effective intervention that can reduce the rate of cognitive decline. In particular, digital games are of great interest among researchers because of their potential to enhance and maintain cognitive function. However, the effects … Continue reading Playing Analog Game is Associated with Reduced Declines in Cognitive Function: A 68-year Longitudinal Cohort Study

Analyzing Paleolakes to Understand the Geologic and Climate Record on Mars

Panayiota Siskos ’23 Liquid, running water has played an important role in forming the Martian surfaces and landforms that may be important in understanding the planet’s past. In particular, paleolakes, one such landform, have been found throughout Mars and offer insight into regional geologic history and climate evolution. Paleolake morphology and distribution reflect water distribution and lake deposits compositions, which in turn indicate hydrologic and … Continue reading Analyzing Paleolakes to Understand the Geologic and Climate Record on Mars

Discovery of a Paleolithic bird carving at Lingjing Henan, China

Panayiota Siskos ’23 Modernity’s understanding about the history of symbolic behavior has increased during the past two decades, and a gradualist scenario has taken shape from the idea of a symbolic explosion occurring 40,000 years ago in Europe with the appearance of anatomically modern human populations. However, there is evidence that such behaviors are older and emerged from African Middle Stone Age and archaic Europe … Continue reading Discovery of a Paleolithic bird carving at Lingjing Henan, China

The Future of Synthetic Biology

Aditi Kaveti ‘23 Natural genetic processes can lose their function over long-term evolution if that function requires too many resources to continue throughout generations. Scientists have been studying evolutionary reversibility, which is the ability to regain a lost function, in order to repair natural systems that have lost such valuable evolutionary processes. To this end in the field of synthetic biology, researchers employ and manipulate … Continue reading The Future of Synthetic Biology

Alexa, How’s My Heart Rate?

Aditi Kaveti ‘23 While heart conditions including high blood pressure and cardiac arrest are well-known, heart rhythm disorders, such as cardiac arrhythmia, are actually more common. The improper beating of the heart can lead to serious diseases like strokes but can be difficult to diagnose and identify because they do not present a periodic pattern in the data.  Shyam Gollakota, an associate professor in the … Continue reading Alexa, How’s My Heart Rate?

Smartphones and Impaired Attention Control

Ayesha Azeem ‘23 The introduction of smartphones into human lives has transformed how people think, socialize, and entertain themselves. Nowadays, a smartphone is all one needs for immediate access to information, friends, and entertainment. Additionally, smartphones allow individuals to escape from reality, allowing for easily formed smartphone addictions to prevent from focus on real-world tasks, like work. While the impact of smartphones on cognitive function … Continue reading Smartphones and Impaired Attention Control

How Does the Brain Learn Taste Aversion?

Ayesha Azeem ‘23 The gustatory system is the sensory system that allows humans to perceive the sense of taste, or flavor. Humans are able to perceive different flavors via the taste receptors on taste buds, which can be found on the upper surface of the tongue as well as on the epiglottis. Taste perception depends on the chemical characteristics of the stimulus, as well as … Continue reading How Does the Brain Learn Taste Aversion?